Displacement In Kurt Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse-Five

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Displacement can refer to a variety of situations. It can be the shifting of one usually unsuitable object in place of another. It can be the fleeing of inhabitants due to a danger. It can even be the transfer of strong emotions from their original subject to another. Regardless of definition, however, displacement revolves around a form of manipulation to the system often resulting in varying degrees of change. More often than not, it is used in the context of a defense mechanism to better a situation. Nevertheless, all forms of displacement follow a similar pattern: stress, then relief.
Kurt Vonnegut, through Slaughterhouse-Five, confronts displacement through one of the most scarring stresses, war, via the main character, Billy Pilgrim. Pilgrim and seemingly Vonnegut himself, as he writes in first person basing the narrative of Pilgrim’s life on his own, during World War II witness so much fatality and destruction that the inevitability of war and death eventually cease to faze the veterans as they adopt
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After undergoing the stress of a traumatic car accident that left his hands inoperable, Stephen Strange, a renowned neurosurgeon, first encounters displacement by substituting western medicine for an alternative, mystical healing route through which he gains supernatural powers, giving himself the relief of usable hands. Continuing, the thickening-plot witnesses displacement again when Strange eventually ends up on the front line of a sorcerous battle in the “dark dimension,” trying to save reality against a dark demon, an obvious stress. Strange ultimately does so by using temporal displacement, in which time is put on a loop, which causes the demon to surrender and allow reality to continue to exist, thus providing relief to the situation. So, once again, displacement is used as a relief, defense mechanism in order to eliminate a stress or
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